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Closing Thoughts

In general, I found the NetCenter easy to set up and use. It was good to see both Windows and Mac support for both setup and backup, and I appreciated its fanless design. The fact that it has NFS support was interesting, but I was disappointed that I couldn't get it to work. The ability to treat the USB drive as a contiguous partition is also a unique feature.

The NetCenter had a couple of nice capabilities, but in general there's just not a whole lot else to make the NetCenter stand out from the NAS crowd. Many of the devices now support gigabit Ethernet, have better performance and sport a larger feature set than the NetCenter.

But when it comes to price, the NetCenter, appears to be very competitive. I found the 500 GB version online for as little as $270, where the cheapest I could find a 500 GB Maxtor Shared Storage was $320. A 500 GB Buffalo Linkstation also turned up around $340. So if you're willing to trade-off lower performance and fewer features with price, the NetCenter might well fit your needs as an inexpensive, light-duty, backup and sharing storage device.

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